The Sisters

  • by Robert Littell
  • Narrated by Scott Brick
  • 10 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

In what Christopher Lehmann-Haupt of The New York Times called "the plot of plots," Robert Littell has created the CIA "legends" Francis and Carroll, dubbed "The Sisters Death and Night" by their cohorts. But few know what these enigmatic and extremely dangerous operatives do. They plot - and they're plotting the perfect crime. They've located the perfect pawn, the Potter, the exiled ex-head of the KGB sleeper school - and, with artful deception, the Sisters coerce him into betraying his last and best sleeper, the man he considers his son. Once awakened, this sleeper, an assassin living secretly in the U.S., will launch a mission of death - unless the Potter, in a desperate race against time, can stop his protegé from committing the Sisters' perfect and world-shattering crime.


What the Critics Say

"As slick a thriller as they come... Very, very good." (The New York Times Book Review)
"Right up there with the novels of Le Carré, Deighton, and the rest of the best." (People)
"Deft... Different... Entertaining... Engaging." (Newsweek)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Littell Light

Sisters is not as good as other Littell novels. Nevertheless, in my opinion he is the best writer of the genre and his worst novel trounces the competition from other writers.

The story is set in the 1960's. The anti-heroes are two old bachelor CIA operatives with symbiotic minds. One sees the forest and one sees only the trees. They finish one another?s sentences and one another?s thoughts. When one is stuck, the other has a ready solution. They are called the Sisters (a title that has nothing to do with their sexual orientation, since, for many years, they have both been too obsessed with intelligence work and double think to think of sex.)
Within the agency, they are known to be somewhat strange, but are kept around, nevertheless, because they are occasionally brilliant.

They both believe that the battle between the United States and the Soviet Union is at a decision point and on this point hangs either civilization and freedom or barbarism and slavery.

So, with the presumed blessing of their superiors, they put their heads together to commit the perfect crime. How? They reason that if they can discover the identity of a Soviet agent in deep cover (a sleeper), hijack him, and control his mission, the crime can not be traced to the Sisters of the CIA.

That takes you through the first ten minutes.

The character development is very good. The twists and turns are good, but not as good as in other Littell novels. The ending has a twist (of course) but is not as ambiguous as Littell?s other novels. I recommend Sisters after you have listened to or read Littell?s other novels. The others are better, but Sisters is worth the read.
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- John R. Brown "Perry Mason Fan"

It's not The Company, but worth a listen.

After spending 40 hours on The Company, another book by Littell read by Brick is like a visit with old friends. You'll find, however, that this is an darker and twistier adventure, with characters that are more flawed and morally ambiguous. I found it to be a compelling listen, but the ending was unsatisfying and nearly ruined the whole thing for me.
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- Tom

Book Details

  • Release Date: 10-03-2003
  • Publisher: Phoenix Books